Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty) in Schenectady
Also Serving Patients in Saratoga Springs, and Troy, NY
Over time, many people notice that their upper eyelids have started to sag, sometimes hanging so low that they impede the line of sight. Others notice that their lower eyelids are drooping, causing “bags” under the eyes. And some people suffer from a combination of these aesthetic concerns. Unfortunately, sagging upper eyelids, lower eyelids or both can make a person look older than their actual age, exhausted (even though they are well rested) or depressed (even though they are happy).
Fortunately, undergoing blepharoplasty in Schenectady, N.Y., with Dr. Bruce Barach can improve the look of sagging upper or lower eyelids or both, for a younger, rested look. Blepharoplasty, or eyelid lift surgery, is a common plastic surgery procedure used to remove excess skin, herniated fat and atrophied muscle from the upper and lower eyelids.
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What Causes Sagging Eyelids?
The aging process is probably the main factor that makes the eyelids and eyes look less beautiful than they can be. Factors other than aging may distort the eyelids as well, including:
- Too much sun exposure
- Too much or too little body fluid, causing bags and wrinkles around the eyes
Next, let’s take a look at the specific factors affecting the lower and upper eyelids.
The lower eyelid is particularly vulnerable to bags and wrinkles. Your wrinkles begin as tiny lines underneath your eye and crow’s feet beside your eye. As gravity continues to weigh down your skin, those fine lines become deeper, more pronounced wrinkles and lines. Swelling (edema) of the lower eyelid tissues can be a major contributor to the unwanted appearance.
There is a collection of fat above and below the eye. This fat cushions your eye in its socket. The orbital septum is an eyelid structure which is supposed to keep this collection of eye fat in place. As the skin loses its firmness, your orbital septum can also weaken. When this happens, the orbital fat protrudes into the space under the lower lid, causing a bulge which others see as a baggy appearance. Your eyelid bulge then casts a deep shadow on your face when light shines down on you from above. Not only does your whole eye look puffy or swollen, but you also look tired and unhealthy.
Your upper eyelid is vulnerable to a somewhat different set of problems. As you age, excess skin can develop, forming a drooping hood over your eyelid. The fat pad that cushions your upper eyelid may also start to protrude, causing your inner eyelid to bulge awkwardly. This results in a sagging, tired, and “older” look. It can get difficult to apply makeup and, if very severe, can even start to impede your vision.
Who Is a Suitable Candidate for Eyelid Surgery?
The best way to establish with certainty whether you would benefit from undergoing eyelid surgery is to come in for a consultation with Dr. Barach. That way, he can listen to your aesthetic concerns and examine your eye area and skin health to establish whether you are an appropriate candidate for the procedure. Patients with more extensive facial rejuvenation needs may benefit from combining brow lift surgery (also called forehead lift) with eyelid surgery while others may require facelift surgery to achieve their desired results.
Suitable eyelid surgery candidates generally include those who:
- Suffer from displaced fat and loss of muscle tone and skin elasticity that contribute to sagging upper eyelids, lower eyelids or both
- Are in sound mental and physical health
- Understand the advantages and potential disadvantages of the procedure
- Seek aesthetic improvement, not perfection
- Have made the decision to undergo the procedure of their own volition
Your Eye Lift Procedure
During your eye lift procedure, the excess fat and wrinkled skin on the upper eyelids that can make you look tired is removed. This procedure can also be used to eliminate bags under your eyes and to tighten your lower eyelid skin. Sometimes, this surgery is performed in combination with other rejuvenating procedures such as a facelift. At other times, it is performed as a standalone procedure. Plastic surgeon Dr. Bruce Barach can help you determine the best approach for your needs.
Recovering From Eyelid Surgery
You should plan to take three to five days off from work to have an eye lift. Extensive post-operative bruising around the eye is typical and should be planned for. This can take anywhere from one to two weeks to clear up entirely. Despite the bruising, the discomfort tends to be relatively mild and of very short duration.
If You Are Interested in Learning More
Please contact our Albany plastic surgeon today to schedule your initial eyelift consultation. Dr. Barach serves patients in Albany, Schenectady, Troy, and Saratoga Springs, New York.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. I lack a distinct crease in my upper eyelids. Can eyelid surgery help improve the appearance of “monolids”?
Yes, eyelid surgery is an effective way to address the lack of a distinct fold in the upper eyelid. In fact, many individuals of certain ethnic heritage, such as those of Asian descent, share the frustration of appearing as though they have “monolids” and often pursue eyelid surgery as a means of altering this aesthetic concern.
2. When can I apply eye makeup after blepharoplasty?
In general, Dr. Barach recommends that patients wait one to two weeks after eyelid surgery before applying eye makeup. Although he understands that you may want to conceal any bruising or swelling throughout the treatment area, applying makeup to a fresh incision site can cause major complications, including infection. In addition, the cleanser used to remove eye makeup can be especially harsh on the treatment area. To be safe, wait the recommended amount of time before applying makeup. If you cannot wait, ask Dr. Barach for further instructions during one of your follow-up appointments.
Can I combine eyelid surgery with facelift surgery or another facial rejuvenation procedure?
Yes, in general, it is safe for healthy individuals to combine a reasonable number of procedures in one operation. Doing so can reduce the number of times anesthesia is administered and can sometimes decrease the time needed to recover from multiple procedures. Dr. Barach may even recommend combining eyelid surgery with another facial rejuvenation procedure, such as brow lift surgery (as mentioned above), to optimize your aesthetic results.
If you are considering undergoing multiple procedures in a single operation, discuss this with Dr. Barach during your consultation. He will assess your anatomy, health and the reasons you are pursuing cosmetic surgery and make a recommendation based on these considerations.